Pedagogy and Play – Transforming Professional Development

This dialogic keynote sits in our understanding of pedagogy, play and professional development. It asserts children and teachers’ rights to democratic experiential learning. It challenges standardized daily practices, either at the level of teacher education or at the level of children education. It opens horizons for the transformation of these practices.

JÚLIA FORMOSINHO is a Professor of the University of Minho (Braga, Portugal) and of Portuguese Catholic University. She’s also the Director of Childhood Association Research Center for Investigation and Development on Early Childhood Pedagogy. She co-authors with  João Formosinho the Pedagogical Perspective of Childhood Association Pedagogy-in-Participation. She’s a member of the Board of Trustees of EECERA where she is responsible for the special issues of the EECER journal. She publishes in Early Childhood Pedagogy and Professional Development.

ELENI LOIZOU is an Associate Professor at the University of Cyprus (UCY) in the Department of Education. She is the director of the Early Childhood Research Lab at the UCY and the academic advisor of the UCY- based school (from infancy to kindergarten) since its foundation (2011). Eleni has been teaching at the Department of Education for 14 years and has been responsible for the revision and creation of different undergraduate and graduate courses. She has participated in different research projects with connections in Europe and the USA and has always been promoting early years quality, for children and teachers. Specifically, her research focuses on young children’s humor, socio-dramatic play, empowering young children, teachers and parents, early childhood curriculum, infant-toddler development and practice, and early childhood teacher education.

Eleni is devoted to the field of Early Childhood Education and is really interested in contributing to the association’s goals. Eleni acknowledges the importance of scientific research in the field and also recognises the need to support children, families and early years’ educators while reflecting upon world political and societal changes. Eleni’s experience in Cyprus, being the only early childhood educator in her department for the past 14 years has provided her with multiple opportunities and challenges to develop the skills to promote Early Childhood Education. Among her accomplishments have been the creation of an Early Childhood Research Lab, a high quality child care, preschool and kindergarten at the university as well as the revision of the country’s early childhood curricula.